Monday, December 31, 2007

Robbery suspect arrested

Timmins Police Service says it has arrested a suspect in connection with the robbery that occurred at a jewelry store in Timmins on Friday. Police say a man walked into Flondra Jewellers on Third Avenue, asked to see some of the items in a display case, and then ran from the store.
Store employees were able to provide a solid description of the thief along with images from a surveillance video.
Then on Saturday, while police were responding to a domestic disturbance in another part of the city, an alert police officer noticed a man who fit the description.
As a result, police say Raymond Bizier of No Fixed Address was arrested and charged with Robbery. Bizier has been remanded into custody, scheduled for a bail hearing. Members of the Timmins Criminal Investigations Section will be following up with the incident. The Timmins Police Service would like to thank the public for their continued assistance in solving these types of criminal offences. The Timmins Police Service encourages the public to call the Timmins Police Service at 264-1201 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-268-8477 if they have any information in relation to other recent robberies committed within the City of Timmins.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Armed robberies in Timmins

Timmins Police Service is asking for help from the public in solving two separate armed robberies in the city on Boxing Day.
Both crimes occurred at Mac’s Milk stores. The first was at the store at Mountjoy and Commercial at about 5:30 in the late afternoon. The second was at the Mac’s at Mountjoy and Algonquin at about 9:40 in the evening.
In both cases, a male person threatened the clerk with a knife and demanded cash. In both cases, the robber collected the money and ran from the store heading north on Mountjoy Street.
Police say the descriptions of the robber are similar in that they’re looking for a man of medium height, 5’ 5” to 5’ 10” tall with a slim to medium build.
Police tried following the suspect with a tracking dog, but without success.
The Timmins Police Service is requesting the assistance of the public in this matter. Anyone with information pertaining to this crime is asked to call the Timmins Police Service at 264-1201 or Crime Stoppers at 268-8477.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Crash on airport road claims a life.

The Timmins Police Service is investigating a motor vehicle collision involving a mini van and mid size car that claimed the life of an 18-year-old Timmins man. The accident occurred on Friday Dec. 14, 2007 at approximately 11:00 p.m. on Airport Road near Timmins High and Vocational School.
The minivan was traveling west on Airport Road when struck by the eastbound car that had lost control. As a result of the collision the 18-year-old driver of the car was killed and another man was ejected from the car. The man thrown from the car has suffered serious injuries and is being treated at the Timmins and District Hospital for his injuries. A third occupant in the car was transported to the hospital and is being examined by the medical staff with non-life threatening injuries.
The driver of the minivan was transported to Timmins and District Hospital and treated for her injuries. A passenger in the minivan was also transported to the hospital with serious injuries and is being treated by the medical staff.
The Timmins Police Service Traffic Unit, Criminal Investigation Unit, Uniform Patrol Officers are all involved in the investigation. Police have concluded their investigation at the scene of the accident but have not yet determined the cause. The car involved is being stored at the Timmins Police Service building pending examination in the next few days. Police have not ruled out alcohol as being the cause of the accident.
The coroner has ordered a post mortem on the young man however the date and time has not been scheduled yet.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Taxi Owner upset with city councillor comments

Tim Thompson, the owner of Beal Taxi in Timmins, says he is not happy that a city councillor is picking on the taxi business without first consulting with those in the business.
Thompon was reacting to a story in The Timmins Times on Wednesday (see other blog story below) about comments made by Ward Two Councillor John Curley at the city council meeting this week.
Curley told council he had received complaints from several east end residents who called for a cab only to be told “they might have to wait for an hour.”
Thompson has responded with a prepared statement and letter to the editor where he challenges Curley’s statements.
Thompson said he was also upset that Curley was speaking out without also contacting the Timmins Police Services Board which regulates taxi licenses in Timmins.
“I strongly view the comments made by Coun. Curley in The Timmins Times, directed against my company as slanderous and unsubstantiated by hard facts. It is most unfortunate that Mr. Curley did not make any attempts to contact myself or the Timmins Police Service before accusing us publicly of not providing proper service in the east end.
In Wednesday’s report in The Times, Curley never mentions any specific taxi company by name.
Curley told council this week that many of his constituents feel that wait times for a taxi are too long, and that not enough taxis are dedicated to Porcupine or South Porcupine to meet the need.
Thompson says that is an unfair assumption. He says delays happen for any number of reasons, which are often beyond the control of the dispatcher or the drivers.
“I strongly object to the assumptions being made by Coun. Curley that we are purposefully negligent in our responsibility to provide taxi service for the east end,” Thompson wrote.
“Our dispatch sheets show that simply is not the case and they can be viewed by Coun. Curley to satisfy his curiosity. Mr. Curley also needs to take note of the time of year and the increased volumes they bring. Any delay in providing service in South End could not be attributed to negligence but would be the result of circumstances beyond our or anyone’s control. He should also note that during the wintry holiday season, Timmins can experience similar wait times.”
“The people of the east end need to understand that Beal Taxi takes extreme pride in providing services to you and we always try to get to you fast and get you where you need to go safely. The efficient handling of calls is beneficial, not just for you, but for us also,” Thompson continued.
Curley told council that maybe more taxi licenses and more competition could solve the concern over delays in service.
At the council meeting, Police chief Richard Laperriere explained that delays can happen, especially during the holiday season. With respect to the need for more taxi licenses, the chief also said he was told that in most instances, at other times of the year, there are more cars available than there are calls for service.
Timmins Mayor Tom Laughren told Curley that he would have the issue placed on the agenda for the next regular meeting of the Police Services Board for discussion.

Search for missing snowmobiler halted

The Iroquois Falls OPP has suspended its ground, water and aerial search aspects of its investigation into a missing 20 year old snowmobiler, who was reported missing on Monday December 10th, 2007. Matthieu Laflamme, 20, of Val Gagne, failed to return home from a snowmobiling excursion in the Iroquois Falls area on Dec. 10 , 2007.
A massive ground, marine and air search was undertaken by the South Porcupine OPP, OPP Emergency Response Team members and an OPP dive team. Despite the comprehensive and exhaustive search efforts, Laflamme has not been located. As well, no significant findings were made to warrant the continuation of the search at this time..
The search has been effectively suspended pending any new developments in the investigation.
Ontario Provincial Police say all reasonable efforts and resources have been deployed and exhausted by the OPP in a comprehensive effort to locate and recover the missing man. This missing person investigation remains open and renewed search efforts may be undertaken in the spring.
Police say the family of Mr. Laflamme has been notified of these recent developments.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Taxi service concerns

An east end city councillor says the city may need a new taxi company if the existing cabbies can’t provide good service in Porcupine and South Porcupine.
Ward Two Coun. John Curley told city council this week he believes that taxi service in his area could be improved and if necessary he will push for more cab licenses and more competition.
Curley said he has taken complaints from citizens who call for a taxi only to be told that the car assigned to the east end is on a run elsehwere, and the wait could be up to an hour.
Curley used the example of a person calling from the Porcupine Mall who might want to go to Connaught Hill.
“They get told they might have to wait for an hour,” Curley told council.
“I don’t believe people should have to put up with that,” he added.
“There could be 20 cabs waiting in Timmins, but you can’t send a car to South Porcupine?,” Curley asked in frustration.
“If these cab companies are not going to service the east end of the city, then maybe we should allow for another cab company that will provide the service.”
Taxi licensing is done by the Timmins Police services board. Curley suggested to Timmins Police Chief Richard Laperriere that the issue should be discussed by the police board.
“Unless there is a change, and I hope to see a change real soon, I will be asking to put more cabs in there and then they’ll have some competition,” Curley said.
Chief Laperriere told council there are delays “more so at this time of year than at any other time of year,” but added there are not enough licenses to meet the demand at peak periods.
“That being said,” added the chief, “from what I hear on a regular basis is there are not enough calls for service for the amount of licenses we have during a regular working day. So that’s a challenge we face.”
Mayor Tom Laughren, a member of the police services board, told Curley he will have the taxi issue added to the agenda for the next board meeting.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Wreath on the Mac

You know Christmas is on the way when the wreath is lit on the Mcintyre headframe, part of the northern skyline in Timmins.

Monday, December 10, 2007

ONR Buses back on the road Tuesday

Ontario Northland has announced that motor coach operations will resume in part on Tuesday, December 11, 2007, with full services available on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 following the ratification of the Company's collective agreement with its 50 motor coach operators over the weekend.
"We are very excited to welcome back our customers, in time to meet their needs over the holidays," said Beverly Martin, Chief Communications Officer with Ontario Northland.
"We will begin to offer partial service on Tuesday, with our full schedule available as of Wednesday. In addition, our shuttle services to connect to our Northlander and Polar Bear Express passenger trains will also resume on Wednesday."
Ontario Northland provides passenger motor coach and bus parcel express services on routes between Hearst and Toronto, along both the Highway 11 corridor through North Bay and the Highway 144/69 corridor through Sudbury.
The following services only will be available on Tuesday, December 11,2007:
Departing from Timmins
- 8:15 a.m. --- Arriving in Sudbury 12:55 p.m.
- 8:15 p.m. --- Arriving in North Bay 1:50 a.m.
- Full services will resume.
- Northlander and Polar Bear Express shuttle services will resume.
Passengers are encouraged to contact Ontario Northland's Passenger Services Department at 1.800.461.8558 for more information and to confirm travel times.

Water emergency resolved

Timmins Mayor Tom Laughren says water consumption in the city can now return to normal.
The city says it has repaired the mechanical malfunction at the water treatment plant and the water plant is now in the process of refilling its reservoirs.
The mayor offered thanks to residents and businesses for their patience and cooperation in reducing water usage during the critical period that began Friday.
The mayor has also offered thanks to its thanks to city staff, to Pro Pipe Construction and Graham Construction for their efforts in helping to resolve the emergency.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Emergency news

Timmins and District Hospital is experiencing what it calls “exceptionally long wait times” in its Emergency Department, because of higher than normal emergency visits and admissions.
The hospital is advising the public and requesting cooperation and understanding.

Conserve Water!

The City of Timmins is asking residents this morning to conserve water and take all necessary steps to ensure that water is not being wasted in any way. There has been a significant equipment breakdown at the city's water filtration plant. It means the city's current water capacity is very low. The mayor's office says the machinery problem is being worked on and it's hoped to be resolved within a few days.

Bus strike settlement

It appears the strike involving Ontario Northland highway coach drivers could be over soon.
Ontario Northland and the Teamsters Canada Rail union have announced a tentative settlement of their dispute.
The drivers went on strike on September 29, effectively shutting down all highway bus service in Northeastern Ontario.
The new deal could be considered welcome news by students and hundreds of others who rely on highway buses as their main means of transportation, especially with the Christmas holiday approaching.
"We are very pleased to have reached a tentative settlement with Teamsters," said Beverly Martin, Chief Communications Officer with Ontario Northland. "We are anxious to resume full motor coach operations as soon as possible and apologize once again to all of our customers, who have been inconvenienced by this recent labour disruption."
"The motor coach operators are dedicated professionals who came to the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference to provide the representation necessary to make a variety of improvements within their collective agreement. While this strike has been difficult for the people of this region, we believe this settlement is fair to the union members and we are proud to represent such professionals in the transportation industry," said Douglas Finnson, Vice President, Teamsters Canada Rail Conference.
If the new deal is accepted by the drivers, Martin says she expects bus service will resume early next week.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Baby Amber case sounded alarm bell.

The Smith Inquiry has been told that a judge’s comments at a court case in Timmins should have sounded the alarm bell about the faulty findings of Ontario’s former chief pathologist Dr. Charles Smith.
The Timmins case was heard in 1991, 13 years before Smith was discredited and dumped from his senior job at the Ontario Coroner’s Office in 2004.
The Inquiry into Pediatric Forensic Pathology is looking into the numerous cases where the former pathologist came up with causes of death that resulted in criminal charges and court cases against innocent people. One of them was a 12-year old babysitter in Timmins accused by Smith of causing the death of 16-month-old Amber Lynn S------, during the summer of 1988.
In more than three weeks of testimony, the case of Baby Amber of Timmins has been cited several times at the Toronto inquiry.
The babysitter said the child fell down some stairs. Smith alleged the baby had been severely shaken. Based on Smith’s evidence, Timmins Police charged the 12-year old with causing Baby Amber’s death.
The 12-year-old, S.M., who cannot be fully named because of a court order, was acquitted of the charges after Mr. Justice Patrick Dunn of the Ontario Superior Court tore apart Smith’s testimony as being inaccurate, poorly researched and self-serving.
Defence experts at the Timmins trial also argued that Smith was wrong in his findings.
Justice Dunn’s criticisms were among the key reasons 12-year-old S.M. was found not guilty.
Ontario’s former chief coroner Dr. James Young, who was Smith’s boss at the time, has told the inquiry that Smith shrugged off Justice Dunn’s ruling and gave him the indication the judge had little knowledge of medical reality.
Young admitted that Smith’s attitude caused him to assume that Smith was right and that the others were wrong.
Young told the inquiry he regretted that he never considered the arguments of the other doctors at the Timmins trial. “None of them stuck with me,” he testified.
“I regret it deeply but I can't go back and change history.”
Young also admitted to the inquiry that he had not read Justice Dunn’s ruling from Timmins until he was shown the document by a member of the inquiry this year.
Young admitted that when he finally read the document, he was “dumbfounded”. He admitted that Justice Dunn’s conclusions were accurate.
Several police officers and lawyers in Timmins remember the Baby Amber case, which was heard at the courthouse on Spruce Street.
They do not however remember the case with enough detail to be able to offer comments. Also, because the babysitter was only 12 years old at the time of the alleged offence, all the records of the case, and her identity, have been kept secret by a ban on publication.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Chamber upset at city hall

The City of Timmins needs to follow its own purchasing bylaw when its come to tendering, and it needs to do more to buy locally.
That was part of the advice offered by the Timmins Chamber of Commerce which addressed Timmins city council at a budget planning session this week.
Chamber president Marilyn Wood suggested not enough city purchases are being bought through the tender process and more local businesses should have the opportunity to bid.
“We have had an ongoing concern about the estimated ten million dollars of city purchasing from out of town vendors,” Wood told council.
She suggested that fewer businesses and entrepreneurs would be willing to set up shop in Timmins if it’s regarded as not supporting local business.
“Our request is not for local preference but rather for local opportunity,” she explained.
“Enforcement of the (purchasing) bylaw is extremely important. If items are not being tendered, how does council know if they’re getting the best deal?,” she added.
Wood says the chamber’s concern is that the city will occasionally deal with a direct supplier, and just assume it is getting the best available price, without giving local suppliers a chance to bid on the goods or services needed. This means the lawful bidding process is ignored. She added that many local businesses don’t find out about a tender until it’s too late. Wood says sometimes only a handful of local businesses, and even out of town companies, are contacted by the city and asked for a quote. She says not all businesses aware of tenders posted on the city’s website or published in the city’s municipal page.
“And when there is local competition, the question we have is why are invitations being issued to out of town businesses?”, Wood added.
Coun. Gary Scripnick said he did not fully agree with the notion of not inviting out-of-town businesses to bid on city projects.
“I believe we must support all our communities in Northeastern Ontario, such as Kapuskasing and Iroquois Falls,” he argued.
“That’s a sensitive issue to me because if we start putting up walls and say you have to only buy in Timmins then our other communities in the area, it could hurt them.
I think its important to have strong communities around us.”
“We are like the grandfather and we’ve got to take care of our children, those smaller communities out there. So this ‘buying local’ I have a hard time with it,” Scripnick said.
Coun. Mike Doody admitted there is always room for improvement in the bidding process, but said council is obligated to get the best price and sometimes that means going out of town.
“I have been there to open the tenders. Sometimes it’s the out-of-town tender that is lower than the local tender. In some cases, they’re not sharpening their pencils. It’s a competitive business. We have an obligation. If we can get it cheaper, we’re going to get it cheaper. And I would hope that the taxpayer would see that view”, said Doody.
Wood admitted that some local prices could indeed be higher. Wood said she wasn’t pushing for a strict ‘buy local’ policy but instead to merely bring changes so that more local businesses have the opportunity to place a bid, when city hall needs goods and services.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Coughing fit contributed to fatal accident

Timmins Police Service says no charges are warranted in the accident that killed a ten year old Timmins girl and sent another child to hospital on October 29.
In a statement released by Timmins Police it appears "an extreme coughing seizure resulted in the driver passing out" for a few brief moments.
“All of the evidence collected and interviews conducted appear to corroborate the information provided by the driver of the vehicle that struck Amelie Guertin and passengers inside the vehicle,” the police statement said.
“All evidence collected from the scene, driver, witnesses and vehicle’s data recorder support this conclusion and police can find no other reason why the accident happened.”
Amelie Guertin died from injuries she received in October as she and another girl walked home from school on Power Avenue. As the two girls were walking, a pickup truck came up from behind and hit the two girls before it crashed into the schoolyard fence where it came to a stop.
The other child in the accident was hurt, but she survived her injuries.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Dog Rescued - Fire on Westmount

A small dog was rescued after a garage fire occurred on Westmount Boulevard today. The garage was destroyed. There was heavy smoke damage and minor fire damage to the adjacent house. No one was home, but neighbors told firefighters there was a dog in the house. The little pooch was found on the smoky main floor and brought outside, Firefighters placed the animal in a warm van until the owners arrived.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Construction accident

A Timmins construction worker was rushed to Timmins and District Hospital this morning after an incident at a construction site on the retail property next to the Home Depot store on Highway 101 West. Timmins firefighters responded to the incident after being told a man was pinned beneath a boom truck. The incident is being investigated by Timmins Police and Ontario Ministry of Labour. Cy Rheault Construction Ltd. of Timmins claimed to be the contractor on the site.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Fire on Waterloo

There was a four-alarm fire just after one oclock this afternoon at the old Canadian Tire store building on Waterloo Road. The building was in the process of being renovated for new businesses. As yet, no information is available on the cause of the fire but the initial call said fire was "in the walls". Firefighters responded quickly and used axes and power saws to break into the walls and roof of the building.

Investigation into mining fatality continues

The investigation continues into the death of a miner at the newest mining operation in the city, the Liberty Mines Redstone nickel mine in Eldorado Township.
According to information from Ontario Provincial Police and the Ministry of Labour, 46 year old Calvin “Cal” Parkinson died sometime shortly after eight oclock Saturday morning. He was working near the 1300 foot level of the mine.
According to police and the Ministry of Labour, a large piece of heavy equipment was involved in the accident. Ontario Ministry of Labour spokesperson Bruce Skeaf says it appears the victim may have been hit by a six-yard scooptram. A scooptram is normally used for ore haulage and dumping, and also to remove muck from freshly blasted drifts.
Skeaf says the scene of the accident has been roped off until a ministry investigator can examine the scene thoroughly. All information and evidence gathered will be presented at a coroner’s inquest, to be held at a later date. Under the Coroner’s Act in Ontario, an inquest must be held whenever a miner is killed on the job.
Parkinson lived in Timmins. He is survived by his wife and four sons. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Miron Wilson funeral home in Timmins.
This is the third mining death in the Timmins area this year. In July 25-year old Lyle Dufoe died at Xstrata’s Kidd Mine when the scooptram he was on went over the edge of a deep stope that was being backfilled. In October, 38-year old Dennis Cloutier died from injuries after he was hit by a piece of falling rock, in a raise, at the Porcupine Gold Mine’s Hoyle Pond mine.
As yet, no information has been released on when inquests will be held into either of those deaths. It is not unusual for inquests to occur up to a year after a death has occurred in the workplace.

Trapper warns of coyote problem in Timmins

A well-known and respected local trapper says Timmins area residents need to be mindful of the “coyote problem” in the city.
Bill Russell says the latest incident, where a dog was attacked Friday night, “is typical” as winter is setting in and the animals are getting hungry and desperate.
“It’s not a new problem,” says trapper Russell, “a bunch of them took down an elk this past summer.” Russell says he was called out to a local resort park after coyotes killed a pregnant elk.
The Friday night incident occurred outside a home on Sandy Falls road as the owner Duane Shannon was putting up Christmas lights with the help of his son Nikolas. Their dog Riley, a golden retriever, was romping in the snow nearby.
Suddenly nearby in the darkness, the dog yelped.
“My husband knew right away something was wrong,” said Cindy Shannon.
“He hollered at the dog and went right over,”she said.
“He was all full of saliva, like he was all wet,” said Duane.
“We brought him in the house, and he was walking really bad,” Duane explained
“I seen a drop a blood and then another drop of blood,” he said, adding that it was difficult to find out exactly where the blood was coming from.
“We couldn’t see anything because the hair is so thick eh.” Duane said the bleeding just wouldn’t stop
“So we brought him out to the vet and she shaved him real good and that’s when we saw all the punctures,” he said.
The dog had been grabbed by the throat.
Russell says it’s a classic attack method by a coyote. He says the coyotes live and die by their ability to hunt and kill. Russell says domestic dogs are easy prey for wild coyotes.
“Don’t think that because you have a big dog, it can stand up to coyote,” said Russell “They hunt and kill to live.”
The Shannons admitted they were not surprised since they had seen coyotes lurking in the fields near their home, which sits on a large tract on flat land.
After returning home from the veterinarian clinic, the Shannons called the Ministry of Natural Resources and were told the MNR is not responsible for animal control. The ministry referred them to Russell who is licensed to live-trap nuisance animals.
Russell’s advice for residents living near the bush is “not to let your animals wander alone.”
He says many residents have complained of dogs and cats being lost, or even “kidnapped” in recent months. Russell says he believes animals are more likely the victims of the coyotes who are preying on an easy source of food.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Baby Amber case to be re-opened

Of the ten new cases uncovered at the Inquiry into Pediatic Forensic Pathology involving discredited Dr. Charles Smith, one case involves the death of a Timmins child and wrongful manslaughter charges against a 12-year-old Timmins girl.
The inquiry is looking into the faulty findings and questionable testimony of Dr. Smith who was previously head of the Ontario Pediatric Forensics Unit at the Hospital for Sick Children.
In several cases, Smith wrongly concluded that young children had died of injuries or negligent behavior by others. In some cases criminal charges followed.
In the case of Baby Amber-Lynn S------, of Timmins, she was 16 months-old when her parents left her in the care of a 12-year-old babysitter one day in July of 1988.
The toddler suffered a fall that day, down five stairs. Paramedics were called. They found the baby breathing irregularly, but with no visible injuries.
Two days later, on July 30, 1988, Baby Amber was pronounced brain dead at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
The cause of death was listed as “cerebral edema, due to head injury after an accidental fall.” An autopsy was requested due to a suspicion of the possibility of foul play.
As the result of the autopsy, Dr. Smith told police it was highly unlikely a fall killed Baby Amber. Smith said he believed the death was caused by severely shaking the baby.
The 12-year old babysitter, known as SM, was charged in December of 1988 with manslaughter. She maintained her innocence.
By the time the charge when to trial in 1991, the judge ruled he was not convinced the death of the baby was due to shaking.
The babysitter was acquitted.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Cash & Dash

Timmins Police Service says it has a suspect in custody following a break-in and attempted robbery at the Xtra Cash business at Algonquin Boulevard and Highway 655 Sunday.
Police say the alarm was activated around 8:30 Sunday morning, but when police arrived no one was inside the building.
According to policed, entry was gained through the roof of the building and its believed that when the alarm sounded, the suspect dashed out the back door.
As the result of an investigating the Ontario Provincial Police, police say 35 year old Robert Weaver was taken into custody charged with breaking and entering. Officer at left photographs evidence on the roof of the building.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Santa Parade

Thousands of Timmins children, and their friends and parents, lined the downtown streets Saturday night for the annual Timmins Santa Claus Parade. The event lasted more than an hour and the weather was perfect. Cold enough for a hot chocolate but warm enough to stand outside for 90 minutes. Sixteen year old Pascal Allarie, the new Miss Teen Ontario North, was among the participants.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Black Box being investigated

Timmins Police Service is working to get court authorization to examine the “black box” device located on the late model Chevrolet pick up involved in a fatal crash on Power Avenue Monday.
The truck somehow drove off the roadway, onto the sidewalk, and into two schoolgirls who were walking home after school, and then into the schoolyard fence (see photo).
One child, 10-year-old Amelie Guertin, was killed.
The black box device, or Event Data Recorder (EDR) is located on many late model vehicles. It provides information on vehicle speed, engine speed, braking status, driver’s seat belt status and the times on airbag deployment.
Timmins traffic sergeant Randall Trebilcock says a court order is required to access the EDR and download the information.
Police are not releasing the name of the driver of the vehicle at this time. Trebilcock says the investigation continues.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Crash update

Timmins Police, working with an accident reconstruction expert from the Ontario Provincial Police, say the investigation continues to determine exactly what happened for a few crucial seconds Monday afternoon when a pickup truck on Power Avenue drove up onto the north sidewalk and crashed into two children walking home from school.
Ten-year-old Amelie Guertin of Timmins died from her injuries. She was pronounced dead at Timmins and District Hospital shortly after being brought there. Her nine-year-old companion received head and facial injuries and she too was admitted to hospital. Both girls were students at the nearby Ecole Anicet Morin.
Timmins Police Traffic Sergeant Randall Trebilcock says the 43-year-old driver of the pickup truck was also brought to hospital. According to police he sustained minor injuries.
The truck has been brought to the Timmins police building. That’s where the vehicle will be closely examined to see if there was any mechanical breakdown that may have contributed to the accident.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Crash kills schoolgirl

One child is dead and another is in hospital after a vehicle collided with a couple of schoolchildren near Ecole Anicet Morin in Timmins this afternoon. Timmins Police traffic sergeant Randall Trebilcock confirmed this evening that one child died as the result of the crash on Power Avenue. Witnesses at the scene saw a pickup truck straddling the sidewalk on the north side of the road where it crashed into the schoolyard fence. No further details are available. Timmins Police Service says the investigation continues.

Emergency follow up

An official incident report has been filed with Transport Canada outlining what happened with an the emergency involving an Air Creebec Dash 8 aircraft Tuesday morning, that had just taken off from Timmins headed for the airstrip at the Victor Mine, near Attawapiskat. The report to Transport Canada is as follows:
“The Air Creebec Inc. de Havilland DHC-8 aircraft (operating as CRQ441) was on an IFR flight from Timmins Airport (CYTS) to Victor Mine. The flight crew declared an emergency due to a landing gear problem and requested a return to Timmins Airport at 1120Zulu (07:20 a.m.) Timmins emergency services were notified. The aircraft held until the emergency services arrived and then commenced an approach. The aircraft landed without further incident at 1145Zulu (07:45 a.m.)”
An updated report indicated “after inspecting the aircraft, maintenance staff found that the hydraulic line to the landing gear selector valve failed at the flare.” This initiated a warning light in the cockpit. That prompted the flight crew to request emergency services and return to Timmins.
The update also indicates that inspection of maintenance records for the plane indicated “no maintenance action was completed in this area to indicate that maintenance error was a contributing factor.”The inspection also showed this was the first ever failure on this hydraulic line.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Airport emergency landing

An emergency was declared at the Victor M. Power Airport in Timmins Tuesday when it was reported an Air Creebec Dash 8 was unable to confirm the landing gear was operational.
The pilot radioed in to the Timmins Flight Services Station requesting emergency services be called out.
The Timmins Fire Department and Timmins Ambulance Services responded to the call, which was made at roughly 7:15 Tuesday morning.
Timmins firefighters were told by the 911 dispatcher that the aircraft had “28 passengers, 4000 pounds of fuel and seven ounces of radioactive material on board.”
When contacted by The Timmins Times, Yvan Perreault, Assistant Manager for the airport said “there was no such substance being transported. Not to my knowledge.”
Mike Pintar, Chief of the Timmins Fire Department confirmed that the fire call included the warning that radioactive material was on board the Dash 8.
“The page from the 911 dispatcher to the fire department did make mention of the radioactive material, but we go out there to make sure the plane lands safely, which it did,” he said.
The passenger plane circled overhead for roughly 20 minutes before making a safe landing on runway 03-21.
Passengers were transferred to another aircraft to safely complete the flight to the DeBeers Victor Mine camp near Attawapiskat, according to Perreault.

Restaurant inspections to be public

The Porcupine Health Unit (PHU) has changed its policy and will soon be opening its public health inspection results to the public.
The PHU board of health has decided that serious infractions of public health matters resulting from food inspections will be posted on the PHU website. This will take into account inspections at all restaurants and other establishments where fresh food is prepared and served.
The policy goes into effect on January 1, 2008.
The motion, approved by the board of health on Friday, noted both “the public has shown an increased interest in becoming informed when it comes to food premises inspection,” and that many other health units in the province are now disclosing their enforcement activities.
The health unit is headquartered in Timmins and serves the entire Cochrane District and as well as Hornepayne, in Algoma District. The health unit has branch offices in Cochrane, Hearst, Hornepayne, Iroquois Falls, Kapuskasing, Matheson, Moosonee and Smooth Rock Falls.
Earlier this year, Ontario’s privacy commissioner Ann Cavoukian commented there was no reason for health units not to make public health restaurant-inspection records public.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Explosion on Jubilee

Emergency services responded to a an explosion call on Jubilee Avenue today, shortly after 10:00 a.m.. Several residents in that immediate area reported hearing a loud bang. When firefighters arrived, they discovered a heavily damaged recreational trailer in the back yard of a Jubilee residential property. One side of the trailer appeared to have been blown outwards. Paramedics provided first aid for a man at the scene, who appeared to have injuries to his hands. The incident is under investigation.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Spill on the river

A containment boom was floated on the Mattagami River in Timmins today after reports that some sort of oil contaminant was spilled in the river. It happened in the early afternoon. The boom was placed where construction work is going on at the Timmins Water Filtration plant. As yet, there is no word from the city on the nature of the spill or whether it presents any sort of hazard to the public.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Mine Emergency - Fatal accident

Emergency workers rushed out to the Hoyle Pond Mine in Timmins today to respond to a call for a person in distress underground. Reports indicate two miners were working together in a raise when one was hit by loose. Among those responding were Ontario Mine Rescue, Timmins Police, ambulance and firefighters. Paramedics provided medical assistance once the injured person was brought to surface. The ambulance left the mine property at 11:41 a.m. to take the victim to Timmins and District Hospital. No further details have been released.

UPDATE: The Ontario Ministry of Labour confirms that the miner brought to hospital has died of his injuries.

Correction note

In Friday’s paper, The Times incorrectly stated Gilles Bisson was first elected in 1987.
In fact, Bisson was first elected as MPP in 1990.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Street racing suspect loses vehicle for seven days

A Timmins man has lost the use of his vehicle, and all his driving priviliges, for a week, allegedly for racing.
Ontario Provincial Police impounded the vehicle Thursday in what is believed to be the first local enforcement of the tough new law introduced on October 1. Police say a South Porcupine OPP officer had occasion to observe and stop the driver of a Pontiac G5 for allegedly committing the offence of street racing in Timmins.
The alleged offence, that meets the newly enacted and expanded definition of street racing, occurred at approximately 1:00 p.m. Thursday in Mountjoy Twp. The driver was stopped by the OPP officer who has charged the driver with Race A Motor Vehicle contrary to the Highway Traffic Act. The driver’s vehicle has been impounded for a period of seven days. Additionally, the charged person’s drivers licence has been suspended for a period of seven days in the province of Ontario.
Eric Fillion, 22, of Timmins has been issued a Provincial Offence Act Summons requiring him to attend court in Timmins on December 6th, 2007.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Wind damage

The wind is creating some headaches in Timmins today for property owners. A cottage property at Kamiskotia lake had the roof literally peeled back by heavy winds blowing from the lake. In the city, the roof at the Aurora apartment building on Suzanne Street was damaged by the wind as well. Most of the fascia and roof materials were blown off the roof and onto the surrounding grounds. At 11 a.m. winds at the Timmins Airport were reported gusting to 67 KM per hour. The problem of trees falling onto hydro lines has also created power outages in many parts of the city.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Fire on Kirby

Firefighters in Timmins responded to a two-alarm housefire at 268 Kirby Avenue late Tuesday. Fire officials say no one was hurt in the fire, but there is significant damage. Firefighters had the blaze under control quickly in the older neighborhood between Pine and Spruce Streets, where houses are located close together. The cause of the fire has not been released and it is under investigation.

Friday, September 28, 2007

OPP seize 'drug car'

Ontario provincial police have sent a stern warning to any drivers shipping drugs through this part of Northeastern Ontario – when they get caught, the vehicle will be seized.
That was evident today when a tow-truck from Espanola arrived in South Porcupine to collect a vehicle seized in the course of a routine investigation where drugs were found. The vehicle will be held in a government compound until the case goes to court. At that time, it may be returned to the suspect, or it may be forfeited to the crown.
The car, a 1998 Nissan Altima, was stopped by police, on Highway 101 in Ogden Township in Timmins on Sept. 7. After searching the vehicle, police officers found quantities of marijuana, hashish and cocaine along with $7,500 in cash.
Police arrested 20-year-old Steven Guidon-Lebel of Val d’Or and laid charges of drug possession, drug trafficking and breach of probation.
Guidon-Lebel had a court hearing and was released on bail, but police decided to keep the vehicle says Community Services Officer Const. Marc Depatie.
“Officers of the OPP South Porcupine crime unit sought and received a management order from the Ontario Court of Justice, whereby now we are seizing this vehicle up until such time as the matter is before the court,” said Depatie.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Winnebago fire on Preston

A recreational vehicle was destroyed and there was smoke damage to nearby buildings as the the result of a fire on Preston Street in Timmins last night. Firefighters doused the fire quickly. There were no reports of injuries. The cause of the fire has yet to be released and is under investigation.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

United Steelworkers Union wants Kidd Miners

The United Steelworkers Union says is has launched a new organizing campaign aimed at the Xstrata Copper Kidd Mine workers.
“We have established ourselves with a drop in centre located across from Northern College in Porcupine,” says United Steelworkers (USW) organizer Myles Sullivan.
“We are inviting all Kidd Creek Mine workers who wish to ask questions or information about the Steelworkers to stop by and visit us,” said Sullivan.
He said the USW has also set up a telephone hotline at 235-1488.
Sullivan says there is a marked difference between what is offered to the Xstrata workers in Sudbury and those in Timmins.
Sullivan says USW also offers expertise in terms of miner health and safety issues.
The Kidd Mine in Timmins has been in operation for 40 years and has never been unionized.
There was an attempt to certify the Kidd Mine workers in the 1990’s but it was not successful.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Gas Leak Evacuates Elementary School

Firefighters were called to the scene at St. Paul's elementary school today shortly before 11 a.m. A gas leak was reported. Students were evacuated from the school while the building was inspected. At roughly 11:15, the students were sent to Queen Elizabeth Public. The school was turned over to Union Gas by 11:30 to further investigate the leak. The cause of the gas leak is unknown at this time.

Timmins firefighters get special training

Did ya hear the one about the firefighter who jumped out the window and slid down the fire hose? It’s no joke.
Firefighters in Timmins are the first in Northern Ontario to learn that as part of the newest and latest lifesaving techniques.
They have been practicing their skills this week at the Northern College fire training building beside Porcupine Lake.
“For the most part, our firefighters key on saving others,” said chief fire training officer Rick Dubeau,
“This is teaching firefighters how to save themselves and how to save their brother firefighters,” he added.
“They’re learning how to exit the building and get down the ladder face first and upside down.”
While the idea of jumping out a window and going down a ladder face first seems like the wrong thing to do, Dubeau says it’s actually the quickest way to leave a building in the event something goes wrong.
Geoff Boisseau, a fire training officer from Toronto, agrees.
“If you watch someone turn around on a ladder it takes a long time, especially if the partner is coming out behind him, so the longer he takes to turn around, the greater peril the partner will be in,” said Boisseau.
Events such as an explosion, a collapsing building, or flames running out of control are the sorts of things that would force a firefighter to escape the obvious danger.
The training involves professional firefighters as well as the students in Northern’s firefighter training program. This week’s training was realistic, so realistic in fact that one firefighter suffered a dislocated shoulder on Monday.
Deputy Chief Joe Stojkiewicz said he is confident the injured firefighter will be fine, but agreed that realistic training is necessary owing to the urgency of the work firefighters are required to do.
Boisseau says the new program is going to be part of the regular training regimen for all fire departments in Ontario.
Dubeau adds that the training involves three elements – learning to stay as safe as possible while fighting a fire, learning how to rescue yourself and learning how to rescue your partner. The training also teaches the firefighters they can use the high strength fire hoses as an escape rope in an emergency.
Dubeau says it’s all about learning to survive with whatever tools you have on hand right now.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

City goes $10 million in debt

The City of Timmins is going more than ten million dollars into debt for the first time since the city was declared debt-free in the year 2000.
The city passed a debenture bylaw Monday night to purchase a mortgage-type debenture in the amount of $10.3 million dollars. The city is buying the mortgage from the Ontario Infrastructure Projects Corporation, an Ontario crown agency set up to help municipalities pay for large projects. The money is being used to pay for the new Timmins police building, and the city’s share of the medical office building on Ross Avenue.
The $10.3 million loan has to be paid back over 20 years. The full cost of the payback is $16.6 million, meaning the loan will cost the city $6.3 million.
Mayor Tom Laughren says it’s a good move considering the fact Timmins now has to pay for things it never had to worry about in the 1990’s.
“Well this is probably the first debenture we’ve had since .pre-2000, when we wanted to be debt free,” the mayor told The Times.
Laughren said being debt-free “was a great idea” but he added “nobody had a vision in the early 90s the provincial government and the federal government were going to download so many responsibilities to the municipalities.”
Laughren says the debenture gives the city a favourable interest rate, 5.1 per cent, and allows the city to pay for the projects in a reasonable and timely fashion.
“I think over this term of council you’re going to see a little bit of that only because we’ve been challenged with the police building, we’ve been challenged you know with 20 to 25 million dollars with the water plant, and the medical school which everybody knew at the time was going to be debentured,” he added.
So does this mean the city is going to delve deeper and deeper into debt? Laughren says council will have to be cautious.
“I think we have to be very careful when we look at projects that we don’t we don’t get it in our mind that we’re just going to borrow to pay for these projects,” the mayor said.
“These projects will have to be well planned. I think if you use the police building as an example, there was many partners brought into the police building after the actual original budget presentation.
“There were funding agencies that came on board and that’s a project that comes in under budget, which is very unusual in a government world,” the mayor added.
Laughren says the days of taking the ‘pay-as-you-go’ attitude are not longer reasonable. He says sewer and water plant upgrades in the new few years will demonstrate that. He says if the city is not able to borrow the millions of dollars it needs, “people would be paying for more water, as an example, than they would for taxes.”
“So sometimes we have a little bit of debt,” said the mayor. “I mean we all carry mortgages on our house and we’d all like to be debt-free but it doesn’t always work that way.”

Friday, September 7, 2007

Another airport incident

Another incident at the Timmins Airport saw emergency vehicles scrambling Thursday. An Air Creebec cargo plane inbound for Timmins radioed that it was experiencing hydraulic problems. The Hawker Siddley 748 made a safe landing but it had to be towed to the hangar. The matter is under investigation.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Timmins parade

It was a great day for a parade. Downtown Timmins came alive to the sound of the Timmins Police Pipes and Drums this afternoon as scores of police officers took part in a ceremonial march from the old police building on Algonquin Boulevard to the brand new police building on Spruce Street South. Hundreds of citizens stood on the sidewalks to watch, snap photos, smile and applaud.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Airport Emergency Call

Timmins firefighters responded to an emergency call at the Timmins Victor Power Airport this morning when a pilot radioed in that he didn't think the landing gear on his aircraft was funtioning properly. As the plane, a 1982 twin-engine Piper Chieftan registered to Commercial Aviation, approached the airport, the pilot did a low flyover (top photo) so the landing gear could be inspected. Once it was apparent that the landing gear was down, the pilot made a safe landing(bottom photo) on Runway-03.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Transit discounts story.

There is a Timmins group seeking to get a discount on transit passes. So far, Timmins city council has not granted a discount, but the lobbying effort continues. One of the key proponents of the discount, Jon Sigurdson, has produced a brief video on You Tube explaining his concerns.

It's NOT a joke.

It's not a joke, it's for real. The City of Timmins is considering amendments to it's property standards bylaw. We ran the story on Wednesday and we have been swamped with calls from home owners who wonder if it's a joke. It's not a joke. The bylaw has some demands in it that have caused concern for homeowners. You can see the full text of the bylaw here:
BYLAW 6489

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Drilling for gold

Normally you don't see anything bigger than a fishing boat on Porcupine Lake, but this week there is a 50-foot barge complete with a diamond-drilling rig aboard. It was indeed a bit of surprise for local residents. It's there as part of an exploration drilling program by a Toronto-based exploration company. See the full details in The Timmins Times this week.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Quick response

Emergency workers responded quickly this morning when a collision involving a car and a cyclist occurred on Brunette Road near the Food Basics store. A young woman was tended to by firefighters and paramedics. The mishap is under investigation.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Fire in the bush

Timmins fire fighters responded to a large brush fire early morning south on Highway 144. Units from Timmins, Mountjoy and Whitney responded and kept the blaze from turning into a forest fire. Flames were contained to several large slash piles, located about 4 kilometres south of the Tatachikapika River.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Teacher Dies

Timmins Police Service has confirmed that Wednesday's death at Northern College was that of a faculty member and not a student. Police officers have been guarding the scene of what they say appears to be an accidental death in the industrial shops area of the college. An autopsy on the dead person was scheduled to be performed in Sudbury today. For more details of the incident, be sure to read the next edition of the Timmins Times.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Death at Northern College

A post-mortem is to be held in Sudbury Friday for a person who died at Northern College in Timmins on Wednesday.
Timmins Police Service was tight-lipped about details of the death, at press time.
Police officers had cordoned off an area of the college Wenesday afternoon and were restricting access in the southeast area of the campus, which contains some industrial shops.
A Timmins Police Service spokesperson would only say the death was “definitely a tragedy” and that no information would be released with respect to the identity of the deceased person.
Police confirmed that the death scene was investigated and then turned over to the coroner, Dr. K.C. Lim, once it was confirmed that no foul play was involved.
Police did admit that the Ministry of Labour might become involved in the investigation.
College president Michael Hill could not comment on whether the matter involved a student or staff member. He referred all inquiries to Timmins Police Service.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Shania Fans 'on their way'

Dozens of ardent supporters of Timmins’ best-known entertainer are making tracks back to this city. It’s all because the fifth annual worldwide Shania Twain Centre fan convention is about to kick off in Timmins.
Some fans are already in Timmins. Many more will be arriving today via the “Twain Train”, which departed Toronto this morning.
Tracy Hautanen, manager of the Shania Twain Centre, is aboard the Northlander train with more than two dozen fans. Hautanen told The Times that the fan convention has become a significant summer event in Timmins.
“We’re very excited, actually some of them have already arrived in town and we’ve had a few sneak through the centre, but we don’t let them see all the exhibits just yet,” she said.
Hautanen is referring to the fact that improvements and additions are made to the centre’s exhibits each year.
The “Twain Train” is a new twist on the fan convention, Hautanen explains.
“We’ve brought fans up twice now by bus. Shania talks often in her interviews about taking the train to Toronto to go to appear on the Tommy Hunter Show, so we thought we’d take them on that same route. So they’re all very excited about it.”
The train arrives in Matheson later this evening and the fans will be transferred by Ontario Northland highway-coach to Timmins.
Hautanen adds the fan convention makes a significant contribution to the tourism industry in Timmins and Northeastern Ontario.
She says it’s not just the fact they come back year after year, but also the fact some fans have come to enjoy the area and now stay longer.
“We have several fans who arrived early. These fans are making their visit a week-long thing, instead of a long weekend,” she said.
She adds the fans has spread the good news about the fresh air and wilderness setting by word of mouth and through the fan website.
She says some fans return to the event year after year.
“We do have several people coming back for their fifth time. We have a gentleman coming from Sweden for the third time. We have a couple coming from Hawaii for their third time,” said Hautanen.
Aside from visiting the centre and seeing the newest Shania displays, the fans usually enjoy local attractions, restaurants and shopping.
Another local benefit is the fact the fans have picked up on Twain’s preferred charity, which is to provide food for the hungry.
Since the Shania Twain fan conventions began five years ago, the fans have donated more than $35 hundred to the South Porcupine Food Bank.
The group says it intends to make another donation this year.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Search suspended

Ontario Provincial Police today officially declared the search for 79-year old Luciano Trinaistich is suspended until further notice. The man was last seen on July 24 when he left home to go berry picking in Murphy Township. That's were police found his Jeep Grand Cherokee. Despite a massive ground and air search, police admit they found no other clues to the man's disappearance.
See the full story of the final search effort in the Wednesday edition of The Timmins Times.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Bears in the news again

Timmins Police Service shot another bear this weekend. The animal was prowling backyards in a neighborhood in the heart of the city, between Montgomery and Wende Avenues, on Saturday morning. Police tried to shoo the animal away or up into a tree where it could be tranquilized. With roughly 20 children playing nearby, police decided to take no chances and killed the animal.
In another part of the city, a mother bear with her two cubs were seen in a bush area off Gold Mine Road that was thick with fresh berries. Click on any picture to see the full size photo.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Fire call on Laidlaw

Firefighters had a busy evening with a house fire on Laidlaw Avenue in Timmins just before eight oclock. No one was home at the time, but fire department officials say it appears some house pets may have perished. The matter is still under investigation.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Search continues

As of five oclock Monday afternoon, the search continues for a 79 year old Timmins area man who has been missing since last Tuesday. Ontario Provincial Police say they intend to keep searching for the time being, but admit they have no clues to the where-abouts of Luciano Trinaistich who left home at lunch time on July 24 to go berry picking. The man's vehicle was found and everything appeared normal except for the fact that Trinaistich has disappeared without a trace. Among those involved in the search are OPP Constable Barry Kelly of Sault Ste. Marie and his tracking dog Trooper.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Berry picker missing

A massive air and ground search is underway in the heavy bush north of Timmins for a blueberry picker who has been missing since Tuesday. Ontario Provincial Police are leading the search with the assistance of Timmins Search and Rescue, and Porcupine Area Search and Rescue. The search is also using a canine team and a helicopter provided by the Ministry of Natural Resources. The weather has been sweltering hot and humid and the mosquitos have been rising in mass swarms in the evenings. Police have not revealed the name of the person except to say he is an elderly male. The man’s jeep was discovered near Murphy Road in a popular berry picking area.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Timmins men survive crash

Two Timmins men and a Kapuskasing man are all recovering in hospital after surviving a helicopter crash near Moosonee Friday.
All three men are employees of Hydro One and were aboard an AS350 company helicopter that hit support cables on a communications tower and then dropped to the ground.
Peter Machete, an investigator with the Canada Transport Safety Board, says it appears the helicopter was approaching a remote hydro substation for a landing. There was a clearing in the bush where the helicopter could land. There was also an Ontario Northland communications tower nearby.
Machete says the helicopter somehow got too close to the tower and the main rotor blade struck a couple of the steel cables that support the tower.
At that point, Machete says, the cables and the rotor became entangled, and the helicopter lost its ability to fly.
The helicopter then dropped roughly one hundred feet to the ground. Machete says the pilot and two passengers suffered a variety of injuries such as lacerations and broken bones. The injuries were considered serious but not life threatening.
One of the men, the one with the least injuries, made his way to the tower maintenance building where he found a telephone and called for help.
An Ontario Ministry of Health air ambulance helicopter was dispatched to rescue the men. See the full story in The Timmins Times.

Mining Death

A Timmins man has died at the Xstrata Copper Kidd mine. The accident happened on the dayshift Monday when the miner fell to the bottom of a 120-foot stope.
According to infromation from the company, the incident was discovered after the miner failed to "tag out" at the end of his shift.
That prompted mine officials to launch a search of the mine throughout the afternoon shift.
The man's body was discovered at the bottom of the stope late Monday. The name of the dead miner is not being released at this time.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Black bear situation continues

Timmins Police Service officers shot and killed another nuisance black bear this morning. The large bear was prowling a residential district along Power Road and continued to act aggressively when police officers tried to shoo it away into the bush. Police have responded to more than 200 nuisance bear calls in Timmins so far this summer.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Blast Incident? Not really ...

Timmins Police and the Ontario Ministry of Labour are investigating an unusual incident where a Timmins public works truck was damaged in a blasting incident this morning. Officials are keeping tight lipped about the incident but it involved a city dump truck that received a flat tire. The driver told police he heard a bang, felt the truck shake and saw flames from the front end of the truck. No one was hurt in the incident.
UPDATE @ 4:30 p.m.- Although city workers described the incident as a blast, police say it now appears the incident was the result of the truck touching overhead hydro wires which resulted in a blowout on the front tire.

Grant and union may begin talks

The Timmins Times has learned there is a possibility that contract talks may be re-instated in the labour dispute between Grant Forest Products and Local 37-X of the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada.
More than 100 unionized employees of the Grant OSB mill in Timmins have been off the job since September 9th , when the employees were locked out by Grant. Contract talks have not been held since that time.
CEP Local 37-X president Rick Racine said he received a phone call from mill manager Bob Cloutier requesting a letter from the union to ask that talks be re-instated.
“That’s about the best news I can get right now,” said Racine.
He said he has sent the letter to the company formally requesting both sides get back to the table. Racine said late Tuesday he had not heard a reply from the company, but that he was hopeful.
“We are sure hoping something good can come out of this and we can all get back to work by late summer or early fall,” said Racine.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Hampton in Timmins

Ontario NDP leader Howard Hampton fired some pre-election shots at the McGuinty liberals today when he said Queen’s Park has failed to provide an energy policy that would rescue the ailing forest industry. Hampton spoke at the plant gate of the Grant Forest Products mill in Timmins where more than one hundred workers have been locked out for ten months. Hampton says it's no surprise that forestry mills continue to operate in Manitoba, where the electricity is three cents per kilowatt-hour while in Ontario the rate is more than six cents per kilowatt hour. Hampton also chided the government for not pushing Grant Forest Products to get back to the bargaining table in Timmins.
For more community news about Timmins and area be sure to check your latest copy of the Timmins Times.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Fire on Cherry Street

A two alarm fire on Cherry Street in Timmins has resulted in heavy smoke and water damage to a two-storey home. Neighbors on the quiet residential street in the north end, called the fire department after hearing a smoke alarm and seeing smoke coming out of the windows. Firefighters were on the scene in minutes and had the fire quickly contained. It appears no one was in the house at the time. The fire is under investigation.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

River Run

A group of river enthusiasts grabbed the media spotlight in Timmins on the weekend as they took a journey up the Mattagami River to protest the plan to build a new dam north of Timmins. The Friends of Mattagami River set off on an inflatable raft to ride the river from Timmins to Smooth Rock Falls. The group wants to raise awareness of the plan to build a new hydro dam and generating station on the river.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Bear Shot

Timmins Police had to shoot a nuisance black bear this morning after the animal led officers on a two hour chase through backyards and driveways in a residential section of the city. Police said the one-year-old male bear showed no fear of humans or human spaces and was acting aggressively. The bear was shot near the Archie Dillon sportsplex, where a schoolbus loaded with children coming back from summer camp was about to unload. Police also responded to bear calls this morning at the Your Independent Grocer parking lot and at playground in the Bonaventure subdivision. Recent figures released by the Ministry of Natural Resources show that nuisance bear calls in Timmins have increased by more than 400 percent this summer over last summer.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Fire on Dwyer

Fire broke out in an apartment house on Dwyer Avenue in Schumacher shortly before eight oclock this morning. One person was sent to Timmins and District Hospital suffering from smoke inhalation. The fire was knocked down and under control within minutes. The cause of the fire has not been revealed at this time. The matter is under investigation.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Sasha Gagnon gets award

Five year old Sasha Gagnon of Timmins was today presented with the Ontario Fire Safety award for knowing to dial 911 when a fire broke out at her grandmother's home last year. The Timmins youngster learned about 911 at Coronation public school. Sasha was presented the award by Ontario Fire Marshal Pat Burke, left, and Minister of the Community Safety and Correctional Services Monte Kwinter. On the right is Timmins Fire Chief Mike Pintar.